The article “Workplace Bullying: Costly and Preventable” (2010) is about workplace bullying and its impacts on an organization. Workplace bullying is defined as repeated mistreatment that causes harm to one or more individuals by an individual or a group exhibiting offensive behavior or verbal abuse. Offensive behavior and malice conduct includes threatening, sabotaging, and humiliating the targets causing interference to the work environment because it hinders workplace productivity. The intention of bullying in the workplace is to induce harm and jeopardize the career of a colleague to gain profit.
A study of 7,740 participants was conducted using an online survey, the WBI-Zogby US Workplace Bullying Survey, to provide research for workplace bullying. The research suggests that the majority of workplace bullying occurs from the top down with the bosses. The research also suggests that the majority of targets of workplace bullying are women. The participants reported that because of bullying, they have developed stress related health issues such as panic attacks, clinical depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Targets of bullying often suffer health issues in attempt to control bullies. Thus, targets of workplace bullies resort to feeling the need to resign and be unemployed with limited benefits and continued stress.
Workplace bullying affects the individual or group targets, and it also affects the entire organization. Targets are often chosen because they are seen to pose a threat to the bully. For example, the target may be well versed in a particular skill in which the bully is unable to perform as well as the target. Targets are reported to be better liked with more social skills, higher emotional intelligence, and received appreciation from other colleagues, customers, and management for creating a positive work environment (Weidmer, 2010). Targets generally exhibit good ethical behavior and honesty and tend to be morally superior to bullies because of their non-confrontational demeanor. Individuals who tend to be whistle blowers are more vulnerable to being bullied. Organizations are responsible for protecting employees from bullying. Management and supervisors are especially responsible for building and maintaining a bully-free work environment. The targets are preoccupied with planning for how to deal with the situation, avoiding the bully, and trying to defend themselves .Organizations are affected by workplace bullying because it hinders productivity because it hinders targets to work. Organizations are also affected by bullying because it can incur more costs and potential legal claims, it promotes absenteeism, increase health care claims, increase staff turnover rates, etc.
There have been instances in which supervisors use their authority to exhibit behaviors of bullying. There was a supervisor in a grocery store that was really brash with the minor employees yelling and uninterested with their concerns. Actions in this scenario reflect practices of bullying because the supervisor was undermining the position of the cashiers and utility workers, and was singling out those employees by treating those employees differently than managers and employees in other departments in the store.
To help eliminate workplace bullying is to make all staff and employee responsible for malicious behavior. It is most important for managers and supervisors to promote and sustain a healthy workplace (Weidmer, 2010). Leaders can create a respectful workplace without bullying through increasing the show of appreciation to all employees, treating employees like they are partners of the organization, and demonstrating empathy for employees. Management can be in tuned with workplace gossip to be aware of potential bullying uprising . Bullying can also be managed with employers implementing reporting and response procedures for targets of bullies . Whistle blowers are sometimes intimidated by reporting bullying but management should encourage reporting by ensuring that bullying will not be tolerated, and ensuring consistent and timely responses to reports. Workplace bullying should be corrected to ensure a productive and effective work environment.
In conclusion, this article gave great insight on how bullying in the workplace can be detrimental not only to the target of bullies but also to the entire organization. There article provided general information of bullying and it included the definition of bullying, practices of bullying, the prevalence of workplace bullying, employers role in workplace bullying, how to recognize bullies, and how to stop bullying in the workplace. Overall, the article provided great insight on how workplace bullying can cause negativity to the employees and the organization. It is important for employers to protect their employees and ensure that bullying in the workplace is nonexistent.